Statement by Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath on World AIDS Day

The HIV/AIDS epidemic has claimed millions of lives around the globe. More than 75,000 Canadians and 30,000 Ontarians currently live with HIV/AIDS. On World AIDS Day we recognize those who have died, we raise awareness about the virus and fight against the stigmatization of those who suffer with this horrible disease.

Globally there have been great strides in the both fight against the spread of HIV/AIDS and the care for the people who are infected with virus. People with HIV and AIDS now live longer and enjoy much improved quality of life than they did just a generation ago. 

Still no clear answers from Liberal government on winter road maintenance equipment: NDP

Today, NDP Transportation critic Wayne Gates demanded answers from the Minister of Transportation on the Liberal government’s procurement of winter maintenance equipment. An Auditor General’s report recently revealed that the government spent millions of dollars to procure equipment for companies they had contracted to clear snow and ice from Ontario roads.

NDP Women’s Issues critic calls for a halt to reductions to Partner Assault Response program

Ontario NDP Women’s Issues critic Peggy Sattler released an open letter today calling on the Liberal Government to heed warnings from experts and front-line professionals about changes to the Partner Assault Response program (PAR) that are putting women and children at risk. 

“The Premier and her government arbitrarily reduced the length of the Partner Assault Response program from 16 weeks to 12 weeks, a twenty-five percent reduction in contact time with offenders," said Peggy Sattler, MPP for London West. "This decision was made without any research into the impact of a shortened program on recidivism and the safety of women and children. Not a single sector stakeholder supported these changes, which were driven purely by the need to contain costs.”

Liberal government must act to address violence in long-term-care homes: NDP

Ontario NDP Seniors critic Teresa Armstrong called for the Liberal government to implement Ontario’s Chief Coroner’s recommendations to improve care for all long-term-care residents. 

“The Ontario Chief Coroner’s report on long-term care confirms what Ontarians have seen for years: There are simply not enough staff and not enough dedicated supports to ensure that every resident receives the care they need,” said Armstrong, MPP for London-Fanshawe.

As New Democrats revealed earlier this month, there is an urgent and pressing need to tackle violence in long-term-care homes. 


Liberals continue to ignore rising food bank usage in Ontario: NDP

As vulnerable Ontarians continue to fall further behind, NDP GTA critic Cheri DiNovo asked the Deputy Premier when the Liberal government plans to finally admit it has failed Ontarians and finally commit to making the fight against poverty a priority.

“A recent report on food bank usage in Ontario shows that, since 2008, food bank usage has risen nearly 15%,” said DiNovo, MPP for Parkdale — High Park. “The numbers speak for themselves: 90% of food bank users are rental or social housing tenants, 12% are senior citizens living in poverty and 27% of single seniors are now living in poverty in Ontario.”

Liberal cuts to frontline healthcare hurting communities: NDP

During Question Period today, Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath denounced Liberal cuts to frontline healthcare in Whitby and across the province. Last week, families in Whitby and Oshawa learned that yet another 21 workers will be laid off because of this government’s cuts to health care.

“The Liberals’ decision to squeeze Ontario’s hospitals means that less care for patients is taking place, more worry for families and lost paycheques and layoffs for dedicated workers,” said Horwath. “Today, families in Whitby have a straightforward question and they deserve a straightforward answer: Will this Liberal government step up and stop the layoffs of 21 hospital workers in Whitby.”

The Minister of Health and Long-Term Care admitted that his government is “transforming” healthcare in Ontario, but he refused to answer for the damaging impact of frontline care cuts on communities across the province. The NDP Leader pointed out that these cuts are hitting home. Ontario Shores Centre for Mental Health Sciences says it is ‘increasingly challenging’ to grapple with the Liberals’ five-year freeze on hospital funding.

Privatizing Hydro One is bad for the environment: Horwath

In Question Period today Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath called on the government to bring forward a meaningful plan to tackle climate change. 

“Climate change is one of the most important issues in our generation, and it needs more than just rhetoric. It actually needs a plan. Does this Premier have a plan that she’s actually bringing to the Paris summit?” said Horwath.


Ontario’s first responders need action on PTSD now: NDP

Ontario NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo called on the Premier to listen to pleas from Ontario’s first responders and finally act to recognize post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a workplace injury.

“These firefighters, paramedics and police officers are the people we call when we need help. But when they need us, all we can say is: Just keep waiting,” said DiNovo. “How much longer will we keep first responders waiting?”

Tweet Liberal MPPs to remind them you won't forget they voted against keeping hydro public

Last week, Premier Kathleen Wynne and Liberal MPPs voted against a motion introduced by Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath to stop the sell-off of Hydro One. 


NDP demands Premier Wynne take action for Northern Ontario families facing increasing poverty

Ontario NDP Critic for Community and Social Services Sarah Campbell demanded Premier Wynne and the Liberal government take action to help Northern Ontario families facing increasing poverty. 

“This week we learned that poverty and homelessness continue to grow in Northern Ontario.  This Liberal government’s rhetoric and record on homelessness and poverty simply don’t match up,” Campbell said.

In Sudbury, the homeless population has more than doubled since 2009. Almost one percent of Sudbury’s population is homeless.   Rates of homelessness and poverty in North Bay and Timmins are higher than the rest of the Canada.

Refugees coming to Ontario deserve the dignity of a concrete resettlement plan: NDP

Ontario NDP Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade critic Teresa Armstrong once again asked the Premier to provide her government’s concrete plan for resettling thousands of Syrian refugees in Ontario.  

“With winter quickly approaching and temperatures dropping, refugees need a warm place to live, money for food and winter clothing, and access to health services,” said Armstrong, MPP for London—Fanshawe. “This government needs to come forward with a plan that ensures that they receive the adequate services they so desperately need.”

Armstrong said Ontario’s New Democrats are proud to stand with Ontarians and welcome Syrian refugees into the province. 

NDP open letter to Liberal government about crisis in correctional services

Honourable Yasir Naqvi
Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services
18th Floor, George Drew Building
25 Grosvenor Street
Toronto, Ontario M7A 1Y6

November 24th, 2015 

Dear Minister Naqvi, 

Ontario is experiencing a crisis in corrections. Crumbling infrastructure, dangerous levels of understaffing and blatant disregard for mental health concerns all affirm that Ontario’s correctional services have been mismanaged and overlooked.

From multiple accidental releases in London, to malfunctioning locks and a mounting inmate hunger strike at Toronto South; Ontarians expect and deserve better. Your Ministry has been plagued by bad headlines across the province, and after a year at the bargaining table and no contract in sight for Correctional Officers, this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Liberal Minister of Transportation refuses to explain Kitchener GO train delays: NDP

Following a Kitchener MPP publicly criticizing her own Liberal government’s GO train plans as deficient, Catherine Fife, the Ontario NDP MPP for Kitchener-Waterloo, asked the Minister of Transportation to provide concrete timelines for two-way, all-day between Kitchener and Toronto.

“Last week, a member of the Liberal caucus, the MPP for Kitchener Centre, publicly admitted that the Liberal’s current plan for Kitchener–Waterloo GO trains is inadequate. She knows, just like the people of Kitchener–Waterloo do, that your government promised two-way, all-day GO trains to Kitchener in five years just 18 months ago,” said Fife. “In April of this year, Premier Wynne backtracked. We won’t see the first GO train from Toronto to Kitchener arrive in the morning until 2025 at the earliest.” 

Experts have said that a fast, reliable, two-way, all-day rail connection with Toronto would help generate 37,600 jobs and create an additional $838M in annual personal income tax revenue.

Statement from Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath condemning acts of hate in Ontario

In the wake of what has happened in Paris and Lebanon and elsewhere across the globe, we have seen a backlash of hate and violence targeting racialized communities in Ontario, particularly against Muslims and Muslim women.

These kinds of acts are unacceptable and despicable  – from the vandalism of a Hindu temple in Kitchener, arson at a mosque in Peterborough and, violence and harassment against Muslim women in Toronto.

NDP open letter to Premier Wynne asking for government resettlement strategy for Syrian refugees

Premier Kathleen Wynne
Legislative Building
Queen's Park
Toronto ON M7A 1A1 

Dear Premier Wynne,

As the Ontario NDP Critic for Citizenship and Immigration, I am writing to you today to ask that you provide the public with your government’s resettlement strategy for the Syrian refugees arriving in Ontario later this year.

Ontario’s New Democrats are proud to stand with Ontarians and welcome Syrian refugees into the province. And, we believe Ontario should be an example for the world to follow.

As members of the global community, we have a responsibility to reach out and welcome those who are fleeing a country ravaged by war. But, the government also has a responsibility to ensure that it has a robust plan in place, which is prepared to offer these people the services that they need. For example, this means making sure that these refugees have a warm place to live, money for food and winter clothing, and access to the required health services.

NDP demands Liberal government provide Syrian refugee resettlement plan

Today Jagmeet Singh, the Ontario NDP’s Deputy Leader, demanded that the Liberal government provide its plan to resettle Syrian refugees in Ontario.

“New Democrats are proud to stand with Ontarians to welcome Syrian refugees to our community. Understanding the importance of bringing in immigrants, respecting refugees in our society, and standing up for the global community is a part of our strong tradition here in Ontario,” Singh said.

“But a promise alone is not enough. We also need a plan. This government needs to come forward with a plan to ensure that these people receive the services they so desperately need.”

“What is this government’s plan when it comes to housing and other settlement services for these refugees? They need something concrete in addition to just promises.”

Liberal government must answer why Ontario leading country in low-wage precarious jobs: NDP

Today, Ontario NDP Labour Critic Cindy Forster demanded Premier Wynne and the Liberal government answer why Ontario is leading the country in precarious low-wage jobs and income inequality, according to a labour report released today.

“Ontario families are facing longer wait times for social housing and the highest day care costs in Canada. Seniors still face some of the lengthiest wait times for long-term care.  Students have the highest debt loads and the least funding for post-secondary,” Forster said.

“We know that this government has been in power for 12 years.  When will this government accept responsibility that its policies and priorities have left Ontario’s most vulnerable behind?” 

New Democrats mark Trans Day Of Remembrance with call for moment of silence at the Ontario Legislature

For the first time in Ontario’s history, Queen’s Park held a moment of silence in honour of Trans Day of Remembrance.
The motion for the moment of silence was introduced by the Ontario NDP and received unanimous consent by all parties in the legislature. 
“The moment of silence today is a historic first for Queen’s Park,” said NDP LGBT critic Cheri DiNovo, a champion for Trans rights in Ontario and Canada and the MPP who introduced the motion. “In fact, this is a first in North America for a jurisdiction of this size.”